IT'S A KNAPP, KNAPP, KNAPP, KNAPP WORLD
or HOW MANY STORM KINGS WERE THERE ...... 4, 5, 6 ??????
GRANTED: Reading this page without knowing what's on the "We Four Kings Of Orient Point " will not make too much sense. That said may I suggest if you have not seen it, that you click on it, then hit back on your browser to return here. If you choose not to you, can enjoy the pictures and scratch your head ..... something I've had the fun of doing for five years now.
Our background shot is of Joseph F. Knapp's cove and bulkhead in Mastic Beach taken in August 2005. 88 years after he dredged, cut out the slip and built the dock on his Mastic estate. It is also where his original custom built 53 foot, 2 inch, 20 ton "Storm King" yacht was moored in 1931. Every time it seems that I search for HER (it would be so much easier to use the KINGS English here, if Dodi Knapp had only named her Storm Queen) Something Happens !
The original "Storm King" at Fort Lauderdale 1940's
It is not unlike the mad search for "all that dough" under the Big W the cast of 1000's takes in It's A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad, World. A film I have quoted more than once on this website, in my life and my philosophy of same. And so once again I return to Stanley Kramer's masterpiece and draw a quote where Spencer Tracy as Sgt. C. G. Culpepper gets on his police radio and tells headquarters....
"Culpepper here, Everything's OK, but it's going to take a little bit longer to wrap this up because there was a joker in the deck, that no one counted on"
Hey ! Wait For Me Where Is Everyone Running Off To?
"Momma! How many people ( and boats ) are mixed up in this caper? " Dick Shawn to Ethel Merman
THE MAIN CHARACTERS GATHERED OUTSIDE THE GATES OF "SANTA ROSITA" PARK, SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA
Edie Adams, Sid Ceaser, Phil Silvers, Dorothy Provine, Ethel Merman, Milton Berle, Dick Shawn, Mickey Rooney,Terry Thomas, Buddy Hackett, and Jonathan Winters getting a talking to from Spencer Tracy while cameo cabbies Peter Falk and Eddie Rochester Anderson look on.
Now on the We Four Kings page, I mentioned I had written to Cindy Purcell who runs things at Huckins Yacht for further info on Mr. Knapp's last Storm King. I felt that any company that kept great records like they do...would hopefuly have further info too... Well Cindy got right back to me with what Huckins had and lo......like everything else Knapp connected I seem to stumble into, for every question I get the answer to , I get two more new ones to ponder!!. It's like my Knapp Questioner Game with an unlimited supply of game cards. (JP has got all the best presses, so you know he can keep printing more & more) Sometimes I think old Captain Dodi is cruising along someplace with his friends and some of his family saying ... "Now what can we throw at Spooner to ponder now ?" .......
Far Right : Dodi Knapp toasting at the New York Worlds Fair circa 1939 , Marion Knapp on his right and unidentified friends on her right. That is probably the photographer's Coke sitting on the table..... or is it ?
But it is fun...I am not complaining......no way...no sir..... Ya got Tid Bits? Send em' !!!
Well Let's Look At The Record .....
Knapp, Joseph F. of P.O. Box 997, Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, contact address Publication Corp. which I see has moved up the block to 640 5th Ave out of 580 5th. since Joseph Palmer passed away in Jan. of 1951. Huckins Model # B34 (Pro Bono -34 Foot - Hull # 251) All squares away with what is in the Huckins Living Legacy Book. Name STORM KING V !!! hailing from HAMPTON BAYS.....stop da presses !!!!! STORM KING V ?...FIVE.... Hampton Bays! well if she is officially declared STORM KING FIVE ..Then what and where is Storm King IV or Four or FORE! ,,, ponder it!
Notice the confidential note, (No it's not the same as Top Secret, who do you think I am Novack?) The boat was originally built for one R. V. Stone but the deal got kaboshed somehow before delivery. So it was a NEW boat returned to inventory in June of 1951 and later sold to Dodi on Jan 24th 1952 for the grand total of $23,000.00 plus tax. Average US home prices around then which were experiencing runaway inflation were up to $10,000.00. Like I said on the We Four Kings Page, even if Dodi took delivery on her in January (as he did on Jan 30th), he didn't have very long to enjoy her. He passed away in October of 1952 and even though '52 was a leap year, he must of enjoyed her immensely, and this man knew quality boats, ( heck he even owned Sea Sled, a cutting edge boat company in the 1920's or I should say his father did ) because just Four Months and 19 days later he ordered himself another Huckins...this time getting back to what he was used to handling .....A BIG ONE....
For She Was Going To Be A Fairform Flyer ...
Hull # 280
and to be known as
STORM KING VI
A Trunk Cruiser Not Unlike His Original Storm King From Twenty One Years Before
Of course we all know what happened on October 23,1952 in Hampton Bays. Beside it being Claire Knapp Dixon's 63rd birthday, it was the day her brother passed away there....... So then why is this factory paper marked Cancelled Oct 17th, Dep. Returned, Deceased ?
JUST MORE TO PONDER FROM WAY UP YONDER......
However Life Goes On ......
and Hull # 280 was finished and launched for Mr. Harold A. Riley on December 2, 1953. It has been in the very proud hands of Debbie and Frank Hobbs of Miami Beach since Columbus Day of 1992. Originally Christened the "Grahar" by Mr. Riley, she is known today as the "Poseidia"
Featured in the Portrait Section of "Huckins The Living Legacy" book, Captain Fred Hobbs who is a pilot for US Air where Debbie also flys as an attendant (my gosh is she holding a Westie?) says : " What we really like is the feel of Poseidia when she is underway, the proud curl of her bow wave, and the slippery,smooth wake of her tumblehome stern. And the way she'll take a beam sea, then recover as if on hydraulic lifts!"
Now I'm not a betting man, but indeed if was and I played the Powerball Lottery more often than once in a very blue moon and I were to hit it, I just might make Fred an offer for Poseidia that he couldn't refuse. Knowing that the unlucky part of renaming a boat has been already dealt with, I'd rename her.... Ya know what I'd call her?........ Storm King VI ? .....nah too easy.... and already been done too many times......I'd call her "Dodi's Dream"
So What Does All This Have To Do with the film " It's A Mad Mad Mad Mad World? " There aren't even boats in it, just car chases and planes ....and all that dough under a Big W......... So glad you asked ........
Does the name Eric Williams ring a bell?
The sharp eyed readers might recall on the We Four Kings Of Orient Point page that Eric Williams is listed as the last known owner of the last Storm King that I think Dodi owned, The Fairform Flyer 34 Footer Pro Bono Model.... with that said let us now return to our movie already well in progress........ got popcorn?
At The Start Of The Film Jimmy Durante "Goes Sailing Right Out There" as Milton Berle describes it again and again
Jonathan Winters : "MISTER WHEN I TELL YOU WHAT HAPPENED BACK THERE YOU JUST AIN'T GONNA BELIEVE IT ! There was this accident see and it involved all this money......$ 350,000.00 Dollars ! Like I said You just ain't gonna believe it! "
Phil Silvers: TRY ME KID... I'M PRETTY GULLIBLE !
Well this scene happened much earlier while we were learning about the Huckins stuff, but it applies here and to this entire five year discovery I've been on .
The Film Has All Kinds Of Planes and Car Chases and all sorts of stuff and yes Big Bucks too... And the all time record for the amount of comedians in one film
I'm not even going to begin to count.
There Are Also Lots Of Convertibles In This Movie....Dodi Liked Convertibles
Lots Of Fresh Air and Hot Air Too
EVERYTHING IS AOK.... NOT TO WORRY
BEN BLUE PILOTING EDIE ADAMS & SID CEASER IN A 1916 JENNY....
you can bet a Jenny or two took off out of "Knapp Field" when they were new planes
There is way to much fun & MADNESS To Illustrate It All On Here ..If you have never seen this film....... you really should......
Near the end everyone meets up at "Santa Rosita " Park, searching for the BIG W that all that dough is buried under. Jimmy Durante tells them about it before he kicked the bucket in the opening scene,,,"LITERALLY & CINEMATICALY"
Ole Smiler Grogan who is about to kick it !
"Santa Rosita" is in quotes because it is a fictional name, but it is a real location on the Southern California Coastline ....... Coastline??? That means boats right ?...... well sort of , but first a few more scenes inside the park to illustrate my point .
Dorothy Provine who by now is thoroughly disgusted with the others, is the first to discover the Big W....and for a moment thinks of what she would do with the money.... She confides in Spencer Tracy who has been looking for it the longest (twenty some years) ...Why If I had that much money I'd go where no one could find me .....
The others are right under it but don't know it yet......
Dorothy's Dream Is Over .......
But what's this got to do with the Storm King ?
What follows is another of the many chases along the California Coast near Santa Rosita Park
and then there is a scene in the a boat yard with silent screen star Buster Keaton in the Captain's Hat
And now we are getting back to the subject of boats.... notice what is in the background of this scene. The Storm King ? ...no but a early 1950's Chris Craft
But Now Here Is A ReeL Connection !.....
Along with the info Huckins sent me on Dodi and his boats, they also sent info on Eric Williams, the last known owner of the last known Storm King # Whatever. Eric bought it in 1972. He moored it in Newport Beach, Ca. and in 1982 donated it to the YMCA In Costa Mesa. So where are these places ?
Glad you asked let's look at the map shall we?
William Demarest & Spencer Arguing About Where Smiler Hid The Dough From The Tuna Factory Robbery!
As You Can See Newport Beach & Costa Mesa are right near each other. And yes I plan to contact the Costa Mesa YMCA to inquire if they still have " Mischief " as that is what Mr. Williams renamed her! But that's not my point....but speaking of points notice that Dana Point is nearby ! But that too is not my point. As a long time fan of Mad Mad Mad Mad World and a student of it if you will, a long time ago I checked into where the actual location of Santa Rosita Park was. I had always said to myself ,that if I ever get to California I'm going to visit the Big W ( BTW They planted those palms that way for the movie and I hear there is only one left standing) Actually I set out for California twice before. The first time in 1970 and wound up in London....it was a last minute impulsive change of plans. The second time was in 1977 and I got as far as Colorado and turned around and went back to Florida.....Had I gone west though, I would of made sure I visited Portugese Point, which is the actual location of The Big W . Portugese Point is located on the Rancho Palos Verdes Coastline right near Newport Beach ! So you could say the last Storm King wound up at the Big W !
Before I shove off with my old pal Jonathan, may I leave you with a little something they used to say at Mad Magazine
about their portraits of Alfred E. Neuman "Suitable For Framing Or Wrapping Fish"